One of the most popular ways to sell on Amazon is to become an Amazon private label seller. But what does this involve, and how can you become a successful seller?
What Is Private Label?
Selling a private label product is where you buy a generic product from a manufacturer and add your own branding to it. The product may be identical or very similar to that being sold by another private label seller, but you own the branding.
For example, you might come across a manufacturer selling a travel ironing board. You could then hire them to sell you their ironing board (perhaps with a few modifications). You can then add your own branding and packaging and sell it as your item on Amazon.
It all sounds easy enough, but it’s a fairly complex process. At least, it is if you want to be successful. So how should you do it right?
Find the Right Private Label Products
Perhaps the most challenging part of the process if finding the right product to sell in the first place. You can’t just choose something you like the look of. You are going to invest a lot of time and money into your product, so you need to make the right decision.
It all starts with detailed research. You need to find out what is selling well on Amazon so that you find a niche where you will make a profit.
You are essentially looking for products that sell well but that are not too competitive. If there is a lot of competition, you will need your product to stand out, which you may be able to do by customizing it to make it unique and provide additional value. If you are just selling an identical product in a competitive niche, you will find it hard to break in.
Ideally, you also want to look for high-margin products. If there are lots of competing products at low prices, it may be best to avoid that category. A good rule of thumb is to choose an item with a margin of 30% or more after fees, but this should be higher for a less expensive product.
You can spend time browsing Amazon, but it’s a lot quicker to use a specialist tool. Jungle Scout is one of the most widely used, so that’s a good place to start. This provides a browser add-on so you can find estimated sales and profit figures as you browse Amazon.
Once you find something potentially interesting, spend some time studying the competition. How good are the listings? Are the images professional? Do they have lots of reviews? This will all help you decide whether it is worth your while competing.
While the temptation is to look for that one product that is going to be hugely successful, it is often better to find a number of smaller products where you will make less money on each. That way, if one does not work out, the others will make up for your losses.
There are many other factors that go into choosing a high performing product. Ideally, you want a product that is small and easy to fulfill, strong so there are fewer chances of defects, and something that is not seasonal so you can sell it throughout the year. You’ll probably come up with your own requirements as you get more experience.
Start with a Small Order
When you start selling private label products and you find something interesting, order a small quantity and see if you can make it work. If it doesn’t sell, you’ll have storage fees to think about, so you want to reduce your risk.
Even if you don’t make as much because the units cost more for a small order, it’s still the safer option. You can always go back and make a larger order later if it works out.
Choose the Right Prices
Pricing is a big issue for private label sellers, and you need to price your private label products competitively. The best way to do this is to use automated repricing software so you can constantly provide an attractive price will drive sales. This is especially important in competitive niches.
This software helps you to stay competitive because you can set it to price-match competing product and adjust automatically, so it is well worth the investment.
Optimize Your Listings to Boost Sales
Once you have found a product and you are using repricing software, there’s one more thing you need: A compelling listing.
This is a big area. Just like any type of marketing, you are targeting two audiences: Shoppers and the algorithm. In this case, it is Amazon’s A9 algorithm.
You need your listing to show up when people search for keywords. Lots of factors go into this, the main one being the number of sales you make. But the first step is to make sure you include all the relevant keywords in your listing.
Use a tool like MerchantWords to carry out keyword research, and make sure you use all the relevant keywords in your listing. This means in your title, bullet points, and backend Search Terms.
But while you need the right keywords in the listing, don’t forget that you also need to persuade shoppers to buy your product once they discover it. You can do this by using compelling copy to highlight the benefits and create a friendly and professional tone.
The images are also very important. In the search results, the image is the first thing shoppers see, so make sure you optimize your images. Use all the images Amazon allows and make sure they are professional — it will be well worth the investment.
Bundle Various Products
Finally, one option to become a successful Amazon private label seller is to make your product stand out more by creating a bundle for it.
This is a simple and effective way to compete. If you provide two or three products together that complement each other, you provide more value, helping your products to stand out.
Start Selling with Amazon Private Label
Becoming an Amazon private label seller is a tempting proposition. However, while starting a business has never been more accessible than it is in 2018, it doesn’t mean it’s easy. Careful research is essential, so start by spending time exploring Amazon to find products and niches that look interesting, then start off small.
It may take a few misses before your first hit. But once you find something that works, you can perfect your process then rinse and repeat with other products to build up a good income.
Private Label Repricing with Sales Velocity Algorithm
Repricing used to be tricky for private label sellers who faced no competition on their listings, but Informed’s Sales Velocity Algorithm is changing things in a hurry. Learn more.
Patrick Foster is a writer and ecommerce expert from Ecommerce Tips — an industry-leading ecommerce blog committed to bringing you the latest business tips from the sector. Check out the latest news on Twitter @myecommercetips.